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700 Gallons of Diesel Fuel Spill From Hawaiian Space Force Facility

By Brett Stayton,

Photo by Bike Maverick/Getty Images

Roughly 700 gallons of diesel fuel spilled out of a Space Force Surveillance Complex in Maui earlier this week. The facility is located at the top of the Haleakala volcano in Haleakala National Park. The Star Advertiser reports that the U.S. Space Force has yet to determine the cause of the incident. “Due to a mechanical issue, a diesel fuel pump for an on-site backup generator failed to shut off,” a spokesperson for the government said.

No injuries were reported as a result of the situation. The fuel spill began on Sunday night. It continued until maintenance personnel shut the pump off at around 8 a.m. on Monday morning. The Air Force’s Installation and Mission Support Center are now working to mitigate the impact of the fuel spill. Space Force quickly notified the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Health regarding the situation that unfolded.

Brigadier General Anthony Mastalir, commander of the U.S. Space Forces in the Indo-Pacfic region followed up with a statement. They said, “We understand the importance of being good stewards of the environment and will work with necessary state and federal officials as we begin clean-up efforts.”

Senator Lynn DeCoite on the other hand is seeking more transparency and accountability from the federal agencies. She also shared her thoughts about the clean-up process. “This 700-gallon fuel spill atop Haleakalā is completely unacceptable and very concerning for those who live and work near the summit. Haleakalā plays a crucial role in the ecosystem of Maui Island, and any contamination of our water sources and natural resources could have devastating effects,” Senator DeCoite said in an official statement.

Navy Facility In Hawaii Had A Fuel Spill Last Year

This time last year, a Navy fuel facility on the island of Oahu contaminated the local water supply. Wayne Tanaka, director of the Sierra Club in Hawaii has been outspoken against the military’s questionable history of environmental stewardship in Hawaii. “Even under times of intense scrutiny such as now, they simply cannot prevent these kinds of incidents from happening. And even with their vast resources, they have not been able to clean up the messes they have created,” he said.

Tanaka continued “We, our children, and our future generations must deal with the military’s repeated contamination of lands and waters across the islands — from UXO in our valleys, to PCBs in our fish, to ‘forever chemicals in our soil and water. We, our children, and our future generations must deal with the military’s repeated contamination of lands and waters across the islands — from UXO in our valleys to PCBs in our fish, to ‘forever chemicals’ in our soil and water.”

Communication Services Damaged In Haleakala National Park Following Storm

Haleakala National Park was hit hard by storms back towards the end of December. The harsh weather conditions caused damage to the communications infrastructure in the area. “Cell phone service is currently unreliable. Response to emergencies within the park may be significantly delayed due to these communication issues. Visitors with existing medical conditions may wish to consider delaying their trip to the summit due to potential difficulty in contacting emergency services,” the National Park Service indicated.

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